Special Education Department

Proud to Teach Amazing Kids

June 3, 2016 Volume 3 Issue 35

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Mark your Calendar


Better Health Month

Great Outdoors Month

6/7 Progress Reports should be completed by the end of the day

6/14 Last Day of School!

7/5 First Day of ESY


Sad News

Nancy Amatuzio recently lost her father. Our thoughts are with her at this difficult time.

Summer Safety Tips for Parents



We are always looking for teacher, nurse and paraprofessional substitutes. If you know anyone who is interested, please have that person call the personnel office at 476-6247.

Extended School Year (ESY)

If any of your students will be attending the ESY program, please remember to collect all items that they need to work on in the summer (including math workbooks) and any materials that you would otherwise be sending home or throwing away (i.e. crayons, pencils, graphic organizers, etc.). These items should be placed in a box and labeled "ESY- send to Hess CST office". Please send the boxes to the Hess CST office prior to leaving on the last day. Thank you!

Learning Ally- Summer Reading

Strategies to Build Reading Stamina with Summer Ear Reading

"20 Minutes of Reading Per Day Could Help You Scoop Up 1,000,000 New Words"

Read the entire article at https://go.learningally.org/building-reading-stamina/

"Ready, Set, Read!"

Get your students and parents READY for summer reading by sharing this printable letter explaining how to access audiobooks at home. Find more inspiration and learn what is coming soon, including twenty prizes for top readers, at LearningAlly.org/Summer.

Summer Tips from Autism Speaks

School is wrapping up and the sun is shining. It's almost time for summer!

Many individuals with autism do best with a routine. Some have a hard time with change. As a result, the transition from school to summer can be difficult.

Here are some of our quick tips to help your family get ready for the transition from the classroom to the campground!

  • Prepare your child. As school comes to an end, make sure your child is prepared in advance. Be very clear about what changes will be happening in the weeks and days leading up to the start of summer. Use visual aids and pictures to help with the preparation.

  • Start a countdown. Highlight the first day of summer break on your family calendar and make it a point to show the calendar to your child each day. Use a fun activity to figure out how many days are left until summer kicks off!

  • Focus on the fun! Continue to let your child know that you are excited for summer and describe the activities you know he or she will enjoy. This will give your child something to look forward to and be excited about.

  • Keep the summer schedule as fixed as possible. For many families, a big perk of summer is the more relaxed and flexible schedule. For your child with autism, however, it may be best to keep the summer routine more structured like it is during the school months.

  • As always, make sure safety is a priority! The warm weather can often lead to higher incidents of wandering. Find some of our wandering resources here.


Summertime: 7 Daily Habits to Keep Young Minds from Turning to Mush

It is 8 am on the very last day of school before the long-awaited summer break begins. You should be excited—very excited. And you are. But you’re also feeling a little anxiety about what’s ahead for your students and their families.

The anxiety is simply because you’re not sure what your students will be doing all summer long. Playing video games? Watching Netflix? Sleeping? Checking devices? A lot of parents seem to think all that’s okay. Summer, after all, is a time to relax, have some fun, relish in some downtime. Isn’t it?

It is—to a degree. But that doesn’t mean parents should abandon the idea of their children honing and practicing the skills they learned in the previous school year. That way, when they return to school in the fall, their brains are not totally drained. And teachers (like you) don’t have to spend days re-teaching and regaining learning momentum.

Summer can be messy. Routines and schedules go out the window. Kids get sluggish, parents get anxious, and everyone gets BORED. Our minds yearn for structure. And that’s what daily habits can provide. They are the foundation of a successful and productive summer break.

Here are 7 daily habit activities to share with parents:

1. Talk to your child.

During the school year, so much of our conversations are about schedules, homework, and soccer practice. Summer is a good time to redirect the conversation to your child and getting to know what he or she thinks about the world around them.

2. Schedule in technology time.

Yes, you heard that right! Kids don’t have to have their noses buried in books to be learning. There are so many awesome apps and digital programs that can help kids learn from their computers. The subject possibilities are endless. Technology is a great way to disguise the learning process!

3. Do something new.

New experiences, new people, new sports, new hobbies. If children are having fun and learning something at the same time, they’ll remember it.

4. Read.

Kids will get excited about reading if they can choose their own books—titles that interest them. Don’t be afraid to stray from the “recommended” summer book list. Take your child to the local library. Investigate their summer reading program. Consider picking a summer reading theme to help your child choose titles.

5. Stay on a healthy sleep schedule.

Ensuring your child’s brain is active is important. But so is teaching the brain to rest.

6. Incorporate learning into everyday life.

For example, ask your child to figure out how many cupcakes to make for a party. Or pre-teach by looking at the next year’s curriculum and starting to talk about some of the subjects—the weather, for example, or the Civil War.

7. Write.

Have your child start a daily journal detailing vacations, events, and activities. To stimulate their little minds, you can give them writing prompts, like “The most surprising thing about my summer vacation is …” or “The summer activity I am most excited about is…”

Sure, turning activities like these into daily habits will take a little effort. But the results are worth it because it means, come fall, you get a class full of motivated students raring to learn!

Posted on May 10, 2016 by Appleseeds

Straight from the Code

In an effort to provide both general and special education teachers with more knowledge of special education, there will be an excerpt from the code each week to help clarify our processes. If you would like to access the entire code, go to http://www.state.nj.us/education/code/current/title6a/chap14.pdf

14 Disabilities defined in the code:

1. Auditorily Impaired

2. Autistic

3. Intellectually Disabled

4. Communication Impaired

5. Emotionally Disturbed

6. Multiply Disabled

6A:14-3.5(c)6 "Multiply disabled" corresponds to "multiply handicapped" and “multiple disabilities,” and means the presence of two or more disabling conditions, the combination of which causes such severe educational needs that they cannot be accommodated in a program designed solely to address one of the impairments. Multiple disabilities includes cognitively impaired-blindness, cognitively impaired-orthopedic impairment, etc. The existence of two disabling conditions alone shall not serve as a basis for a classification of multiply disabled. Eligibility for speech-language services as defined in this section shall not be one of the disabling conditions for classification based on the definition of "multiply disabled." Multiply disabled does not include deaf-blindness.

7. Deaf/blindness

8. Orthopedically Disabled

9. Other Health Impaired

10. Preschool Child with a Disability

11. Social Maladjustment

12. Specific Learning Disability

13. Traumatic Brain Injury

14. Visually Impaired

Over the next few weeks, each of these terms will be described.

From the Department of Education

Student Services Snippets

Critical Information for ALL staff is contained in these short screencasts. They run from 4.5 to 8 minutes. Please refer to them as needed.

Accessing IEPs and 504 Plans


Learning Ally

Working with Paraprofessionals

Critical Information for Paraprofessionals

Filling Out Requisition Forms

If there is other information you feel it would be helpful for us to share via screencast, please let us know.